By Justin Baragona – February 6, 2020
Popular Resistance Note: It is evident from some of the commentators on MSNBC that the network is going to be getting behind former mayor, Michael Bloomberg, in the race for the Democratic presidential nomination. Bloomberg is the 8th wealthiest person in the United States, worth about $61.9 billion.MSNBC commentators became very upset when Bloomberg was described as an oligarch. The definition of an oligarch is a very rich business leader with a great deal of political influence.
Glen Ford, the editor of Black Agenda Report, describes Bloomberg as the “Oligarch in chief of the Democratic Party.” He describes Bloomberg’s actins and writes: “This is how you buy the Democrats, who are actually much more of a brand name than a political party. Bloomberg had already made a down payment on the Democratic franchise, having lavished $100 million in subsidizing Democrats during the 2018 congressional races. He says he’s ready to throw $1 billion into the pot to ‘defeat Trump’ in 2020, no matter who wins the Democratic nomination. But that’s a bunch of crap. Bloomberg is flashing his billions, building his own infrastructure, and suborning the DNC in order to insure that his oligarchic class does not loose control of the only reliable half of the duopoly that remained after takeover by the hopelessly unreliable Trump. “
Bloomberg has spent more than a quarter of a billion dollars of his fortune on TV advertising where he is skipping the early voting states and entering the race on March 3, when 14 states vote on Super Tuesday. Bloomberg has spent more on television ads nationally than all 10 other Democratic candidates combined. After the Iowa caucus catastrophe, Bloomberg announced he would expand its staff to more than 2,100 people nationwide and double his television advertising in every market where it is currently advertising.
Last week, the Democratic Party changed the rules on how candidates can qualify for debates. The DNC announced that it was dropping an eligibility condition by no longer requiring candidates to meet a minimum number of donations, previously in the hundreds of thousands, to be included in the DNC-sponsored debate.Bloomberg would have been excluded under the old rules. Bloomberg seems to have bought his way into the debates, as he is the only candidate to personally donate money to the DNC, according to Federal Election Commission records. He gave more than $300,000 of personal money to the DNC in one day last November — and more than $800,000 to a DNC-adjacent fundraising PAC the same day.
Bloomberg is the very definition of an oligarch. Why does MSNBC get upset when this obvious truth is told? KZ
Things got extremely heated on the MSNBC set when Nina Turner wouldn’t back down after calling Mike Bloomberg an oligarch.
Moments before the Iowa Democratic caucuses kicked off Monday night, Bernie Sanders’ national campaign co-chair Nina Turner sparked fireworks on the MSNBC set when she repeatedly described billionaire Democratic presidential hopeful Mike Bloomberg as an “oligarch.”
Criticizing the Democratic National Committee for overhauling its debate requirements in a clear move to allow Bloomberg to qualify moving forward, Turner told MSNBC host Chris Matthews that American voters are concerned about “the oligarchs” being able to buy their way into elections.
“Do you think Mike Bloomberg is an oligarch?” Matthews, taken aback, exclaimed.
“He is,” Turner shot back. “He skipped Iowa. Iowans should be insulted. Buying his way into this race, period. The DNC changed the rules. They didn’t change it for Senator Harris. They didn’t change it for Senator Booker. They didn’t change it for Secretary Castro.”
Matthews then asked if Turner believed Bloomberg bought his way into the debates, prompting the former Ohio lawmaker to declare that he “absolutely did” and it was a “stain on democracy.”
After Matthews finished interviewing Turner, anchor Brian Williams turned to MSNBC contributor Jason Johnson, who apparently also had a strong reaction to Turner’s assessment of Bloomberg.
“Calling Mike Bloomberg an oligarch has implications in this country that I think are unfair and unreasonable,” he huffed. “I disagree with a lot of things Mike Bloomberg has done as a mayor. Oligarchy in our particular terminology makes you think of a rich person who got their money off of oil in Russia, who is taking advantage of a broken and dysfunctional system.”
“Mike Bloomberg is just a rich guy,” Johnson continued. “Just because you’re rich doesn’t mean that you’re an oligarch that abuses power. The power that Mike Bloomberg got access to was given to him by the voters of New York… It ain’t the kind of language you should be using. I think it’s dismissive, unfair and it’s the kind of thing that blows up in your face if you become the nominee and you have to work with Mike Bloomberg three or four months from now. That’s the issue Sanders people never seem to want to remember.”
Following a commercial break, MSNBC had Turner and Johnson debate her use of the term. The Sanders adviser, for her part, was unapologetic, saying it was “ironic” that “somebody would defend the wealthiest people in this country over the working people in this country.”
“That is the same message Bernie Sanders has to the everyday people of this nation, that I welcome the hatred of the elites because I am standing up for you,” she added. “So cry me a river for the wealthiest.”
Johnson, meanwhile, contended that his issue was what the word “oligarch” implied while also claiming that Turner herself worked for someone who’s part of the one percent, wondering if she would call Sanders an oligarch.
Things continued to get more and more heated between the two, with Turner accusing Johnson of name-calling and “defending somebody who is buying his way through democracy” while Johnson complained that this was “just how you guys operate.”
Eventually, at the end of the very tense exchange, Matthews asked if she wanted to change her word for Bloomberg.
“No, he doesn’t tell me what to say or how to change my words,” she emphatically replied. “My word stands!”
Featured image: Nina Turner. Taken from Popular Resistance